Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category

The Days Before You Were Here.

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Dear Baby Girl,

We are anxious to meet you.

Your due date is 6 days from now.

September 2.

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As of yesterday, you were the size of a mini-watermelon.

But you feel more like a gigantic watermelon that wins the contest at a redneck fair.

You are active.

Especially at night.

Sleep is scarce.

But I think it’s God’s way of preparing me for your first days.

Weeks, maybe?

Not months, though, ok?


I want you to know about life before you.

These last days of summer.

Our life preparing for you.

I want you to know how much your church family loves you.


So many ladies came to welcome and celebrate you.

Kim, Ellen, Cindy and Laura went to great lengths to plan to perfection.




So them.

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“Ready to Pop” was the theme.

Gourmet popcorn.

Cake Pops.

Pop Rocks for favors.

And a full brunch spread.

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They prayed over you.

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Over us.

Over our family.

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You are more blessed than you know to be born into such a loving and kind church.

These women have so much to teach you, Holland Joy.

I can’t wait for you to meet them.

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We went to Disneyland without you.

Sorry about that.

Blame Nan and Pops.

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I mean.

Technically you were there.

We also went to Legoland.

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Your older sisters are currently obsessed with Chima Lego toys.

At first I thought a house full of small plastic blocks would mean an end to my sanity.

But actually they have kept them busy most of August.

And they are the only thing in the house the dog has zero interest in chewing.

Well, that and his chew toys.

Thank you, Chima.

Get it together, Lincoln.

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Your sisters shared a shake by the seashore.

Kayla says she’s ready to share with another.

Ashlyn says: “So many girls!!”

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Daddy says amen to that.

We also visited some of our favorite So Cal friends.

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Friends you are going to love, Holland.

Friends who can’t wait for you to be the seventh little silhouette in a crazy bunch.

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Your family and your Nana’s amazing friends love you, too.

Susie hosted a shower for you.

It was such a lovely afternoon.

With the women of our family.

And women who are like family.

Yummy steak and salmon.

Spinach salad.

Nothing Bundt Cakes for dessert.


Beautiful, thoughtful gifts.

So many adorable outfits.

You are spoiled, little girl.

And better dressed that your mama.

Let’s just say you won’t be wearing the same outfit twice.

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School starts for your sisters tomorrow.

They said goodbye to summer with one last swim.

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And Lincoln got a rough first haircut.

He’d like some time before your arrival for things to grow out a bit.

We can’t wait to kiss your face, baby girl.

We hope it’s soon.

August 10 on 10. And a Winner.

Saturday, August 10th, 2013


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And that’s a wrap, Saturday.

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Also, congrats Mrs. Van Nuys!

You and your pit stain removal won Katy’s print.

Thank you to all who linked up to Pintertest Kitchen this month!


Friday, July 19th, 2013

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My parents and Kayla left on an airplane for Sea World yesterday morning.

They will spend 5 days there celebrating her 10th birthday.

Dave got 2 free passes to Great America from a co-worker.

So Ashlyn gets to go there today.

We figure she doesn’t need to know the difference.

Swimming with dolphins in paradise.

A fermented smelling log ride.



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Summer has been good to us so far.

Lots of puppy micro-management.

She’s real bossy.

And he’s already too big to be held like that.

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Birthday celebrations.


For the sourdough bread, primarily.

My girl.

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Vet visits.

He gained 7 pounds in three weeks.

Mostly from ingesting flip flops.

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Cooking camp with Chef Noni.

They made us lunch on the last day and I’m still not quite sure what it was.

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A low key Fourth of July.

The Sterno was MIA so we used a Bath and Body Works votive.

Ocean Breeze S’mores, if you will.

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And a REAL bunny came to visit.

Lincoln who?

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Lots of checking in on dad.

And drinking unsweetened iced green tea like mom.

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Summer school.

Safari adventure.

As if she hand-picked the theme.

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IHOP breakfasts.

Day made for $4.99.

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Hope launched an additional service on Wednesday nights.

We meet at the Peninsula Chinese Alliance Church in San Mateo at 7 pm.

Ashlyn is super relieved we finally get to go to a “real church” with “lots of toys.”

Church planter kid problems.

Dave is preaching a series on forgiveness and it’s GOOD.

And challenging.

You can listen here.

And be mad at him for challenging you.

But you will also learn how to forgive him.


Reading with Grandmums.

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Fossil hunting and rock collecting at the Dinosaur Exhibit.

Grandma CeeCee’s birthday dreams come true.

She is a good grandma.

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Puppy overload, I know.

I just love this picture so much.

And when we think back on the Summer of 2013, we’ll mostly think of him.

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Pool play dates with old and new friends.

Nothing better.

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And an awesome Star Wars birthday party yesterday afternoon.

Lots of Yoda Soda was consumed.

More diversion from her sister’s SoCal adventure.

May the force be with her.

And may summer last forever.

Night VBS, I Love You So.

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

We’re one week into summer vacation.

The days are long.

But then they seem to fly at the same time.


I get the importance of cherishing every second I have with my children.

But some days I just want to hide in the backyard shed with the spiders.

Too much time.

Too little organized activity.

Too little patience.

Too little free camps.

Too little Spicy Doritos and sour cream.


Gentle reminders of why I don’t homeschool.

And why I gave up student teaching after 3 minutes and changed my major.

Also can pregnant humans suffer from hip dysplasia?

Because I think yes.

Our puppy is still an angel.

But he’s an angel with a chewing problem.




We have lots of all of these things.

So I’ve given up on sitting down.

Because standing up 30 times in one hour is hard when you have hip dysplasia.

To the rescue?

Night VBS at Grace Bible Church.

Sheer, mommy-sanity-saving genius.

The girls love every second.

They come home reciting scripture and singing songs about Jesus.

And I love 3 free hours of not having to fill every second with brain stimulating activity.

When we left a bigger church and started a smaller one, I knew we’d sacrifice.

A good old fashioned Vacation Bible School for my kids is what I mourned most.

But God continues to remind me that He is in control.

Even when I want to hide in the spider shed.

Summer, it’s on.

Pass the Doritos.

10 on 10: The Lincoln Edition

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

There’s a new little man in the house.


It’s only been 5 days but I’m convinced he’s the perfect puppy.

House trained in 5 minutes.

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Mellow, patient, gentle.

Sleeps through the night.

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Not crazy about baths.

But they are necessary when one rolls around under a plum tree.

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Scared of stairs.

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Really, more like a stuffed animal than a live dog.

With a great bill of health from the vet.

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He makes birthday party dreams come true.

Birthday girl is counting down the days.

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He loves car rides.

And snuggling.

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Which is good because he doesn’t really have a choice.

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He’s already a pro at making new friends.

And chewing on blocks.

And has effortlessly settled into our hearts and our home.

He’s got big paws to fill.

And I think he’ll do just fine.

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Baby Bumps Are Brutal For Blogs.

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

I write so I don’t forget.

But sometimes I forget to write.

Or I don’t want to write.

Or I have so much going on I feel like there is no time to write.

Or I blame my growing belly.  Which, to be honest, isn’t helping.

But I continually decide that I don’t want to forget more than I don’t want to write.

So hi.

I’m 26 weeks and 4 days pregnant.

I’m beginning to waddle.

A foot has been lodged in my belly button intermittently since Monday.

School is winding down and summer is upon us.

Today, I wonder if Kayla will be in therapy because I didn’t chaperone her field trip to the Lawrence Hall of Science.

But there’s the waddle.

And the bus ride.

And an OB appointment.

Our May days have been filled with much.

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Giants games.

Dave has a habit of listening to the radio call home run playback that he can barely hear over the roar of the live crowd and I think it’s such strange behavior.

Isn’t that why we’re AT the game?  To listen to the LIVE crowd?

Call me crazy.

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Tea parties with Grandmums.

Also an excuse to put her candy in fancy dishes.

And to eat all her candy.

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Daily denial of new app requests.

“It’s only point nine nine, mama.”

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Mother’s Day Lunch.

They’ve been watching lots of Lady and the Tramp lately.

Ashlyn is still learning the concept and thought it was a day for me to serve her.

“Please get me juice… because it’s Mutha’s Day!!”



I told her it was Father’s Day instead.



Hi baby girl.

You have a cute nose.

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Birthday thank you notes.

Written all her own.

They took 12 days and we still have four to write but we won’t mention that part.

Cindy, Abby, Madison and Scottsdale Ware’s, we’re working on them.


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Tree climbing at Nan and Pops.

Most likely for the last time.

They sold it.

We cried.

But the new house has a pool.

So, that pretty much trumps any sentimental value.

And makes us get over things quickly.

Like five minutes.

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After school Slurpies.

One for her, one for Kayla.

Or both for her.

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Golfing for a good cause.

Or riding in a cart and eating lots of good food for a good cause.


The waddle.

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Independent breakfast prep.

Fresh fruit salad and all.

I love nine.

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Creative writing.

Jesus, a frog and a beaver.

I love six, too.

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We put a deposit down on a puppy last week.

Just in case having a new human baby is too easy.

A male Goldendoodle named Lincoln is coming home next Sunday.

Kayla’s 10th birthday present.

But we’re kind of just saying that to get out of a big party.

And because I’m desperate to avoid another heart-wrenching, no-luck Saturday at the SPCA.

I mean.

Why not?

Not much going on around here.

10 on 10: A May Day

Friday, May 10th, 2013

It was a…

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teacher appreciating,

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flagpole assisting,

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African appareling,

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speech perfecting,

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shelf clearing,

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catch-up lunching
(I missed him),

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eyeglass repairing,

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Mother’s Day gifting
(I have no idea what’s she’s talking about),

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church key grabbing,

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salad bar for dinner

kind of day.

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10 on 10: A Day in April

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

You know.

Most of my days are like this one.

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I rarely write about them.

But I know I want to remember them.

I will miss this routine one day.

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Like morning music with my Kindergartner.

I want to remember the way sweet Vidal always saves her place marker under the piano.

And excitedly sets it down next to his when we walk in the room.

I want to remember Teacher Karen’s passion for teaching beautiful sounds to deaf children.

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I want to remember the few minutes I take most mornings parked in the Starbucks parking lot.

Catching up on emails.

Reading blogs I love.

Texting and/or chatting with friends.

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I want to remember Hope’s first Marrieds group.

And all the little, behind-the-scenes church details I know I’ll soon forget.

Or may no longer be responsible for.

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I want to remember her minimum day, pick-up smile.

And her school stories.

Today a caterpillar escaped the class terrarium and tried to spin a cocoon in McKayla’s desk.

Ms. Schlecht saved the day, scooping it up with a Post-It note.

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The piles and piles.

And piles of laundry.

Even those.

I want to remember.

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I want to remember the fact that Ashlyn is insisting we name her little sister Taffeta.

And her scowl when I tell her no.

And that she takes her pants off when it gets hot outside.

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I want to remember the joy I felt when we our very first baby gift arrived for our littlest baby girl.

By friends that know us well.

And love us better.

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I want to remember tonight’s dinner out.

And playing Go Fish with sugar packets.

While another read her animal encyclopedia.

And the fact that Wreck-It Ralph joined us.

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I want to remember the way she reads.

Slow, careful.

Her fingers tracing every word.

I know that soon this will change.

And she’ll read faster.

Life moves so quickly.

Even the slow days.

And I want to remember.

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13 on 10: I Cheated a Little.

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

10 (or maybe 13) photos taken on the 10th of the month.

What?  Sundays are full.

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Friday, January 18th, 2013

I don’t have much.

It’s abnormally cold.

And I’m doing laundry in the garage in a trench coat.

I’m really ready for sunshine and summer.

Lots going on around these parts.

Our carpet is being ripped up and the beautiful hardwood underneath that should have never been hidden is being refinished.

I cannot adequately express my elation over these interior design happenings.

We’re also having the Pergo in our kitchen replaced with tile.

10 x 20 camel colored in a sideways subway formation.

Dave is not so sure but I am joyous.

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Kayla got purple glasses yesterday.

She can now “see her friends hair” which was clearly a crisis beforehand.

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Ashlyn is reading.

Books about cats on mats.

With hats.

Exciting literature.

The church recently launched a few new small groups.

A women’s bi-weekly study and a once-a-month married group.

If you’re interested, “like” Hope’s Facebook Page for more details.

Dave is also scoping out a location for a mid-week service we’re hoping to start in the next few months.

Anyone have a spare warehouse they’re not using?

With heat?

That’d be great.


Happy weekend, friends.

Bundle up.

And GO Niners.